Dominican priory and monastery.

A brief description, derived from Wikipedia.

Zadar is a city in Croatia on the Adriatic Sea. It is the centre of Zadar county and the wider northern Dalmatian region. Zadar faces the islands of Ugljan and Pašman, from which it is separated by the narrow Zadar Strait. The promontory on which the old city stands used to be separated from the mainland by a deep moat which has since become a landfill. The harbor, to the north-east of the town, is safe and spacious. Zadar is the seat of a Catholic archbishop.


In earlier time Zadar was named Jadera. It  became Zara when it fell under the authority of the Republic of Venice in the 15th century. Zara was later used by the Austrian Empire in the 19th century, but it was provisionally changed to Zadar/Zara from 1910 to 1920 and finally only Zadar in 1945.

For the history of Zadar from Prehistory till the Medieval Period see Wikipedia, s.v. Zadar.

The Treaty of Zadar, 1358.

The insurrections of the Zadar’s citizens in the 13th and 14th century against the Venetian interference, resulted in Zadar coming back  under the crown of the Croatian-Hungarian king Louis I by the Treaty of Zadar, in 1358. After the death of Louis, Zadar recognized the rule of king Sigismund, and after him, that of Ladislas Anjou.
During his reign Croatia-Hungary was enveloped in a bloody civil war. In 1409, Venice, seeing that Ladislas was about to be defeated, and eager to exploit the situation despite its relative military weakness, offered to buy his "rights" on Dalmatia for a mere 100,000 ducats. Knowing he had lost the region in any case, Ladislas accepted. Zadar was, thus, sold back to the Venetians for a paltry sum.

The Medieval Period.

The population of Zadar during the Medieval period was predominantly Croatian, according to numerous archived documents,[1) and Croatian language was used in liturgy,[2] as shown by the writings of cardinal Boson, who followed Pope Alexander III en route to Venice in 1177.

1.^ N. Klaić, I. Petricioli, Zadar u srednjem vijeku do 1409., Prošlost Zadra - knjiga II, Filozofski fakultet Zadar, 1976, pages 215-222
2.^ A. Strgačić, Hrvatski jezik i glagoljica u crkvenim ustanovama, Zbornik Zadar, Matica Hrvatska, Zagreb, 1964, page 386

When the papal ships took shelter in the harbour of Zadar, the inhabitants greeted the Pope singing lauds and canticles in Croatian.[3]

3.^ N. Klaić, I. Petricioli, Zadar u srednjem vijeku do 1409., Prošlost Zadra - knjiga II, Filozofski fakultet Zadar, 1976, page 216.

The Golden Age of Zadar.

Even though riddled by sieges and destruction, the time between 11th and 14th century was the golden age of Zadar. By its political and trading achievements, and also his skilled seamen, Zadar played an important role among the cities on the east coast of the Adriatic.

This affected its look and culture: many churches, rich priories, monasteries and palaces for powerful families were built, together with the Chest of St. Simon.

The Dominicans in Zadar.
Saint Dominic's Church
(Crkva sv. Dominika)

The Dominicans settled in Zadar in the  13th century and built their priory with church, who was consecrated in 1260.

The Dominican Master of the Order, Raymond de Capua, signed in 1396 a document proving that "on June 14 the high school of theology was assigned to the monastery in Zadar". This means that there must have been an earlier faculty of philosophy established in Zadar, as theology could have been studied only after a completed five-year-course of philosophy. From the very beginning this high school bore all the main characteristics of the then known European universities: it enrolled students not only from the country but also from abroad, secular students could also study there, the monastery had an extensive library etc.
Source: Doctor Stjepan Krasić, professor at the Papal University "Angelicum" in Rome.

When Napoleon took Zadar in 1805, he abolished the Dominican order, turned the church into a barracks, and shut down the university in 1807.  The church has recently been renovated, and part of the priory complex is now home to Zadar's popular and internationally acclaimed Puppet Theatre.

The University is refounded in 2002.


The monastery.


The monastery of the Dominican nuns received a rule from  Raymond de Capua, the Master of the Dominican Order in1345.


This monastery or the priory is the birthplace of the famous liquor Maraschino.

In peace and quietness of Zadar, the Dominican monastery, was made and noted  at the beginning of 16th century, the recipe of authentic Zadar liqueur. It was  prepared  for the first time by the apothecaries of the Dominican monastery.

 Special and full flavoured liquor was known under the name of “Rossolj” (it came from the word “ros solis”- “the sun dew”. Later on, this liqueur was named ‘Maraschino’,  as it was produced from the essence of ripe fruits of Dalmatian cherry marasca as well as from the leaves of its sprigs.

At the beginning, this noble liqueur of delicate taste to which even medicinal effects were attributed, was available only to some privileged. With the appearance of the first professional distillers at Zadar in the 17th century (Rota, Mola and Calcengio), the secret of Maraschino taste could be spread.


To search stamps and postmarks of Zadar.  On Order.


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